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Dharamkot, Mcleodganj Overview

The little hippie village of Dharamkot is located near Dharamshala and Mcleodganj, but unlike these places, Dharamkot is a quaint town not visited by a lot of tourists. Popular as the Yoga Village, it is ideal to spend some time away, meditating in peace. The tiny hamlet is blessed with astounding views of the nearby Kangra Valley the mighty Dhauladhar ranges. Home to the Dhamma Shikhara Vipassana Meditation Centre and Tushita Buddhist Meditation Centre, Dharamkot manages to maintain a fine balance between a serene yoga retreat town, and an adventurist's oasis.

Trekking is one of the most popular activities at Dharamkot as it is the base to some of the popular hikes in the region including the Triund and Indraprahar Pass trek. This is probably why the tiny town is said to be a haven and a must-visit for backpackers and travellers. However, if you are someone who is looking for a relaxed holiday and prefer not to hike or walk around, avoid visiting Dharamkot. There is a single narrow pathway connecting the entire town, leading to and ending at the "Trek and Dine Cafe".

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Things to Do in Dharamkot

Trek to Triund: One can undertake a thrilling trek to one of the most famous places for trekking - Triund. It is a beautiful hill station which is located at the foot of Dhauladhar Ranges. It is a 4-hour trek from Dharamkot which can be a little tricky towards the end. One can also enjoy the bliss of having a cup of hot tea and snacks while enjoying the view of the hill station for an overnight stay.

Visit Bhagsu Falls: One can visit the Bhagsu Waterfalls, whose frothy waters and cool sprinkles leave a person replenished and provide a backdrop for numerous pictures. There is a shortcut from Dharamkot down to Bhagsu which provides a good walk to people while enjoying the view of the small shops and markets selling shawls, jewellery and crystals on the way.

Visit the Dalai Lama Temple: One can also visit the Dalai Lama Temple which is located in Mcleodganj. Its radiating spirituality and goodness calm the mind of a person, thereby exerting positive energy in a person. One also gets the privilege of interacting with the monks at the monastery and if given a chance, they can also get an opportunity to be a part of the audience to watch the Dalai Lama address the crowd if he is present at the temple.

Meditation and Yoga: One can also visit various meditation centres which run yoga centres. One can be a part of the crowd doing meditation, yoga and simultaneously attend bhajans and kirtans in the evening. The Vipassana Meditation Centre in Dharamkot is the most preferred centre. There are other meditation centres in Dharamkot that run a similar course like, Himalayan Iyengar Yoga Centre, Parimukti and Trimurti Yoga.

Best Time to Visit

Although one can visit Dharamkot at any time of the year, it is advisable to go in the months of September to June. The hills are covered in snow during the months of December and January. Also, March to June is the best time to go for trekking and sightseeing.

Food in Dharamkot

There are various restaurants in Dharamkot that provide Indian, Tibetan, Israeli, Western food and multicultural traveller food including vegetarian and vegan food. Among the famous food, one can try Bhagsu Cake, which is a popular food item in Dharamkot. Bhagsu Cake reminds a person of Millionaire’s Shortbread which is a crunchy biscuit layered with caramel toffee and topped with chocolate.

There are many places to eat and dine in Dharamkot. Some of the prominent places include Trek and Dine, Om Cafe, Spaced Out, Once in Nature and Cool Talk Cafe. The breakfast in Chai Shop outside Tushita is very good and is very affordable. A person will find many people over there sipping on a cup of tea after mediation. The Tibetan Kitchen in McLeodganj is also recommended for authentic Tibetan food.

Accommodation and Where to Stay in Dharamkot

Accommodation in Dharamkot is basic. Usually, it is restricted to rooms in homestays and villages. Many only have a shared bathroom. There are many places which don’t have a name but are quite safe and are really affordable. Most budget rooms in Dharamkot are not available to book online and searching for a room in Dharamkot can be difficult since it involves a person to travel a lot to search for a decent hotel. However, there are some hotels which can be booked online. They are quite decent and are preferred by many people.

Some of the popular hotels include Mountain View Budget Homestay, Nature-Friendly Stay, Cosy Budget Homestay and Dev Cottage.  Hotel Backpacker’s Inn and Green Hotel are also good options since they are bright, colourful and clean hostels with dorms and private rooms and provide excellent views of mountains from their balconies.

How To Reach Dharamkot

Dharamkot is situated at a distance of 2 km from Mcleodganj and one takes 35 minutes to reach the place on foot. Auto-rickshaws and buses too are easily available from Mcleodganj to Dharamkot. The nearest railway station is Jalandhar Railway Station.

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